I consider being inert kind of character flaw.
I cannot imagine anyone moaning:"There's nowhere to go out to!" or "I have nothing to wear!" without implicitly thinking that it is a value/opinion/priority thing and not a question of objective assessment. Every night there is something going on and everyone has too much to wear - but we rather choose to smirk at presented options, balking at the very idea, and completely ignore the option of creating our own possibilities. We conform with groups, we perpetuate status quo, we choose not to experience diversity on grounds of remaining in our own comfort zone.
But... just like travel to other countries, going to live gigs we don't usually choose to attend is a mind-broadening experience. There is whole new society to meet and experience in both of those instances.
As it so happened I recently went to see Streets United! - Perkele, .upset and Šank?! @ Pogon Jedinstvo 13Apr2013 and this was an example of mind-broadening experience.
I go to a lot of punk gigs. I go to all of them alone because none of the people I usually spend time with goes to punk gigs to listen to punk and I hate having them come just for the company. I listen to a lot of punk music at home and both me and my offspringess clearly have the affinity for punk harmonics and clarity of ideas presented through punk. But, as it happened, all of punk gigs I went to up until now were on the smallish side - and I suppose I kind of thought about that as the norm: 10-200 attendees per punk gig... and then I saw last.fm event saying there will be punk gig at Pogon Jedinstvo and I immediately thought:"What kind of punk musician can sell that much 80 kn tickets?!"
So I researched a bit and that left me equally confused. I read about Perkele a bit, listened to their discography, watched some videos. There was nothing there to explain the mystery to me. There was nothing left but to invest time and money and go and see it firsthand.
Tickets said that gig starts at 20:00 (what kind of punk gig starts at 8?!) so I timed my arrival around that time. Grounds around Močvara and Jedinstvo were overflowing (hundreds, surely!) with colorful people who did not spare any effort to make their subcultural affiliation obvious and it was one great and unusual sight to see. On the other hand it was Saturday night (and not week night like most of the punk gigs I usually frequent) so it could go both ways. I found it both silly and kinda entrepreneurially sound to find hamburger stand in front of Močvara and you couldn't throw a brick in any direction and not hit bottle of cheapest wine accompanied with stuff brown and fizzy. I went inside around nine to see what's going on....
.... and I found .upset already on stage, nearly finishing their set!
Sound was excellent and Jedinstvo hall virtually empty with only the band, bartenders, bouncers, me and two boys drunk out of their mind on the rail if front of the stage. .upset played two more songs, very enthusiastically and quite good and I was a bit disappointed I did not enter sooner to listen to more of their act.
I sniffed around a bit, bought myself a drink and observed some and about half an hour later was completely shocked to see Perkele climbing on stage and starting their act!!
WTH? It wasn't even 10 pm and also I presumed there will be more local/support bands before the stars of the show but it went down this way. Surprised audience flowed into Jedinstvo and in no time at all packed hall was singing and enjoying Perkele act.
I stood there flabbergasted.
This was punk's catnip if I ever saw one.
There's no need to point out simplicity and intention of Oi! punk music but to see this in action was funny as hell. Inked, pierced, fierce and serious thugs - both male and female - were singing and dancing and taking their shirts off like at the early morning hour of a country wedding. If there were tables there there would be dancing on the tables, one-sentence-choruses were sung and chanted for long minutes and it was a celebration of gemeinschaft in its purest distilled form.
Pinnacle of the evening was some local football chant and angry guy behind me yelling to noone in particular in the chanting group on the other end of the hall: "Ma nabijem vas na Dinamo i na nogomet!"
Amused and in good spirits, geezers from Perkele played a bit more, returning for an encore ceremonially just like any pop performer would have and then they were gone. As well as 80 percent of the audience.
At 23:20 someone was up on stage and starting to play...
... but they did not seem to be Šank?! They were not bad in any way but I just cannot stomach ska so after some more mingling I set for home. I found out later this entertaining bunch were S-kapada.
So, what did I learn here?
That no matter how hard we press to be different there's just no escaping human condition. Whether jazzhead, punk or folkster - laughter is same, enjoyment is same, theatrics are same, need for belonging is the same.
We fill the same holes with fundamentally if not apparently same stuff.